Pffft, they’re only cookies, these should be a breeze! Right?
Ansel is quite chatty in this book, having at least one page dedicated to speaking about each product individually. In this section he notes how ‘he had never tasted a cookie he had actually liked’ WHAT?? I’m sorry but, you could feed me the worst cookie on the planet and I’m pretty sure I would still enjoy it. ;) His reasoning is that growing up in France, kids would be far more likely to ask for a croissant or éclair (French kids are advanced amirite, pretty sure the majority of people on my cookery course would still choose a cookie over an éclair). He goes on to say that the first cookie he ever truly liked, was one he made when working at Daniel (a Two-Michelin starred restaurant in NYC), and how cookies are so beloved because everyone has fond memories of when they first fell in love with them.
I wish I could tell you that I fell in love with cookies when my mum or nan taught me to bake them, however that would be a lie since baking would be the last thing my mum would ever want to do (she’s no good at it either, sorry mum!). I had always eaten cookies so I can’t pin-point the cookie that made me fall in love with them however, if I were to choose it would be a Lidl Bakery Chocolate Chip Cookie. I know, that is quite possibly the lamest answer I could have given but they’re absolutely PERFECT (seriously you should run to your nearest Lidl ASAP if you’ve never had one, they’re even better when they have just pulled them out of the oven).
Since then, I have memories of cookies being my nemesis. Cookies are incredibly easy to eat but FAR harder to actually bake how you want them. The problem is that everyone has their own definition of what a cookie should be; thin, crisp, soft, chewy, dense and even cakey. HOW ARE YOU SUPPOSED TO FIND A RECIPE THAT MEETS YOUR NEEDS PEREFCTLY?? ITS IMPOSSIBLE. I don’t think I’ve ever been fortunate to bake a cookie as good as the ones from Lidl and that is something that I will always be ashamed of.
Ansel includes a timeline of when each aspect should be made and indicates that the dough should be made the day/night before, and left in the fridge to rest. Me, being my impatient self was like ‘meh, I’m sure it’ll be fine if I make it all in one day’. NO WOODY, listen to the pastry god. This is pointed out because, trust me, the mixture is not a ‘dough’ when it has just been made, it resembled a chunky pancake batter. Once I noticed this, I finally gave in, covered it with cling film and placed it in the fridge (my lesson was learned).
The recipe is a flourless chocolate recipe, which means it is actually gluten free (YAY for the special dietary requirements). This could easily be a go-to recipe when you have that gluten-free aunt coming round for a drink and you want to impress her.
Let me tell you now, putting that ‘dough’ in the fridge was the best decision of my life. You know when people are like ‘marrying you is the best decision of my life’, WELL that doesn’t even compare with the impact refrigerating this batter had on me ;). I think it’s because of the massive amount of chocolate in the dough, but damn it set and it officially became a dough.
Baking the cookies was nice and easy and they came out gooddddd. You know when cookies have that really appealing cracked appearance, these were cracked all over, slightly chewy on the outside and dense and almost brownie-like in the centre. They were PERFECT.
Overall, these definitely are pretty damn great cookies. Generally, they are definitely quite an indulgent cookie (I doubt you would want more than one at a time) and serving them with milk is a BIG BONUS. Dominique Ansel is definitely giving Lidl a run for their money ;).
NEXT UP: MINI MADELEINES (spoiler alert; mine will actually be full size because that’s the only size mould I have and cant afford a new one ;))
Thanks for reading this! Knowing that people are going out of their way to read whatever I have to say for whatever reason is the best feeling in the world, and I’m crazy grateful (trust me). PLEASEEE keep reading, the blog posts are only going to keep getting better, more interesting and more dramatic (by dramatic I mean tears that will be shed while trying to make the advanced recipes ;)). Also, if you haven’t read the previous post, TREAT YOURSELF ;).
I would be incredibly grateful if you could give me some feedback on this post. This is my first ever blog series and some of you are probably reading this like ‘YIKES, what is he doing??’. Think of these first posts as the previews for a Broadway show, anything is currently capable of changing if need be. Alternatively, if you think this blog is the bomb (firstly, I will marry you), secondly interact with me in the comments below. If you have any questions or tips, I would love to hear and will always respond!
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